The average marking / bull score is among the most telling figures we come up with, because it represents
many different opinions on the same bull at different times. It's hard, but not impossible for this
number to be completely inaccurate. I've found that in most cases, a bull's average marking will be
more accurate after there are at least ten outs in which the bull got marked. Ten outs
represents a probable 20 opinions from a minimum of 2 different judges, or a maximum of
maybe 10-20 different judges.
The judge's opinion is just that - an opinion. It may be argued that certain judges are
in the habit of marking certain types of bulls differently, and it is probably the
case that some judge's opinions may be worth more than others. Nonetheless, the judge's
opinions distribute the winnings in the bull riding event, and therefore affect the
contestants even more than the stock. That means the judge's opinion of bull performance --
imperfect, though it may be -- the best information available. If it is inaccurate, then
the contestants are suffering more than the bulls are.
There are many different ways of looking at bull performance, including the judge's
marking and scores, buckoff percentages, number of outs, performance versus the premier
bull riders, and more. All of this should be taken into consideration when comparing